In Calvin's medieval studies program, you will truly submerse yourself in the Middle Ages. Whether on or off campus, in courses or on field trips, here you can experience this period of history with all of your senses.

Interim course

Intro to Medieval Studies

This course will explore the history of books and book production in the Middle Ages, both in their material and intellectual context. You will explore issues of medieval literacy, the history of books, collections and libraries (including a visit to a medieval manuscript collection), and learn hands-on how to make paper, cut pens, write texts and bind books.

Field trips

Most courses in medieval studies include at least one field trip. Previous trips have included the Waldo Library at Western Michigan University (WMU) in Kalamazoo. The Waldo Library houses a great collection of medieval manuscripts belonging to the Cistercian Institute at WMU. There were given on permanent loan by Dom Edmund Obrecht, a former abbot of Gethsemani Abbey in Kentucky, in 1973. Some of the highlights of their collection include a thirteenth-century copy of the sermons of Bernard of Clairvaux and two beautifully illuminated liturgical manuscripts dating from the twelfth and thirteenth century.

Other recent field trips have also gone to:

  • The Newberry Library in Chicago
  • St. Gregory's Abbey in Three Rivers, MI
  • The Waldo Library at WMU in Kalamazoo, MI
  • The Arts Institute in Chicago

Off campus programs

As a medieval studies minor at Calvin College, you have the unique opportunity to study in universities all over the world, including many locations in Eurpoe, as part of our extensive study-abroad program. Even more study opportunities are available to places like Austria, Germany, the Netherlands and Russia through Calvin partner programs.